The third weekend in August is always a good time to be in Lake George, but for gem and mineral aficionados, that’s the traditional weekend of the Lake George Gem and Mineral Show. Whether you are an amateur rock hound, a hobbyist, a professional geologist, or just looking for a great deal on some gem stone or wire gold jewelry, this is the place to be. The Gem and Mineral Show runs Friday, Aug. 16, through Sunday, Aug. 18, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., weather permitting.
The show will be next to the Lake George Post Office, and is free and open to the public. Free parking is located adjacent to the show. According to Richard Kawamoto, president of the Lake George Gem and Mineral Club, more than 30 vendors from around the country will be exhibiting mineral specimens, fossils, jewelry and even meteorites.
There will also be mineral and crystal hunts for kids, who can even keep the treasures they find and dig out of the sand.
This is the twentieth year for the show, which operates as a fund raiser for the Lake George Gem and Mineral Club. The club offers several thousands of dollars for scholarships each year from the proceeds. Any Park or Teller County student heading to college with a major in the earth sciences or geology is encouraged to apply.
“Some years we have no applicant for the scholarship,” Kawamoto stated. “When that happens, we assist in support of a summer intern at the Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument or other earth science locations.” In 2019 they are providing $3000 in support to interns.
Club members will be on hand to answer questions, such as mineral or gemstone identity, value, or even suggest cutting techniques for any specimens you might have. The club, which currently boasts about 320 members, “consists of members with PhDs in geology to people who barely know which end of the hammer to use,” said John Rakowski, one of the organizers of the event.
Club members participate in one to three field trips each month from about April to September. The rest of the time they hold meetings, presentations or have guest speakers in indoor venues.
Members’ ages range from teens to seniors, and there is a specific educational program for kids, meeting during the school year on the second Wednesday of each month, at 6 p.m. Club activities also include the superb collection they maintain at the Pikes Peak Historical Society Museum in Florissant, which includes the largest smoky quartz crystal found on the North American continent. For more information, go to www.LggmClub.org or contact John Rakowski at 719-748-3861.